Ripley urges Northants to back up brilliant Nottinghamshire win

Northants head coach David Ripley has called on his players to back up their superb Sunday success at Nottinghamshire when they host Lancashire on Wednesday.

David Ripley wants Northants to maintain their momentum against Lancashire (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
David Ripley wants Northants to maintain their momentum against Lancashire (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

The Steelbacks secured a 49-run win against the Royal London One-Day Cup holders at Welbeck Colliery at the weekend.

It was their first victory of the season in any competition and they will now hope to secure a second triumph in three 50-over matches when Lightning come calling.

“Lancashire look a good side,” Ripley said. “They have a mixture of experience and some good young players, so that’s going to be a tough game.

"They’ve used a lot of spin so far and batsmen have been scoring good runs for them.

“One win isn’t going to get us through so we need to back Sunday up.

"We can’t get too carried away but it’s the stature of the game against Notts and the nature of the performance that’s really pleasing.

"We have to build on that and continue to improve our performance.”

A poor opening month of the season, with three defeats from four Specsavers County Championship matches, was followed by a batting collapse against Leicestershire to open the One-Day Cup with another loss.

But Northants produced what Ripley called a 'top response' with against Nottinghamshire, earning their first victory against that county in any competition since 2003.

It was a fine all-round team performance that saw the Steelbacks' struggling batsmen rack up their joint-fifth highest List A total of 339 for nine.

And Ripley said: "Even if we had gone on to lose a tight game, we would still have gone home fairly pleased because the performance was much improved.

“Our batters took some criticism after the last game and there was some honest chat about where they were and I thought they dusted themselves off and played really well with most people contributing.

“The lads up front have got some licence to play some shots but the biggest area for me is, when we come out of the Powerplay, assessing where are we and ensuring we don’t give any wickets away, we rotate the strike and we build a platform for the end.

“It was a little bit of a relief to win at the weekend because we haven’t played our best cricket in the first month of the season and that becomes frustration and pressure loads on the next game so it was nice for us to play not far off our best game.”